percuss

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old French percussir, from Latin percussus, past participle of percutere (to strike or pierce through), from per (through) + quatere ( to shake, strike).

Verb[edit]

percuss (third-person singular simple present percusses, present participle percussing, simple past and past participle percussed)

  1. (transitive) To strike; to hit; to knock; to deliver a blow to.
    Solid bodies, if they be very softly percussed, give no sound.
  2. (intransitive) To impact.
    Falling on the roof of the caravan, the hailstones percussed noisily.
  3. (transitive, chiefly medicine) To attempt to divine the location or other quality of something by tapping on (an overlying surface).
    The doctor percussed his chest to determine whether he had pneumonia.
  4. (transitive, chiefly medicine) To attempt to divine the location or other quality of (something) by tapping on an overlying surface.
    Percussing a patient's spleen is best done while he is on his back.

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